Nathan Brown reporter


Hello, and welcome to Campaign Notebook, where I will be summarizing political developments in the Gem State, and eastern Idaho in particular, every Sunday from now through Election Day.

Not the busiest of weeks to get started but there are a few things worth noting:

West to be on presidential ballotRapper Kanye West will be on Idaho’s presidential ballot as an independent.

The Idaho Democratic Party and two voters had been suing to get West removed from the ballot, since he certified he was not affiliated with a party in his paperwork to run as an independent but is a registered Republican in Wyoming. However, Fourth District Judge Jason Scott ruled Wednesday that Idaho’s law only requires independent presidential candidates to certify they are unaffiliated, not to actually be unaffiliated, and that the statute gives the Secretary of State’s office no power to second-guess those certifications, according to the Idaho Press.

West was a Trump supporter before declaring his independent run. In several of the states where he is on the ballot, Republicans have worked with him and Democrats have opposed his efforts. The same appears to be true here — longtime GOP political operative and former executive director of the American Conservative Union Gregg Keller sent out a press release on West’s behalf after Wednesday’s ruling, identifying himself as “senior strategist” for West’s presidential campaign according to the Idaho Press.

Jorgensen visits Meridian, Idaho Falls

Jo Jorgensen, the Libertarian Party’s presidential nominee, was in Idaho last week, holding outdoor rallies in Meridian on Wednesday and Idaho Falls on Thursday. In her speech in Idaho Falls, Jorgensen called for dramatically reducing the size of the federal government by greatly reducing taxes and spending, doing away with numerous federal agencies, decriminalizing drugs federally, selling federally owned public lands, cutting military spending and bringing home American troops stationed in foreign countries.

Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson got 3.3% of the national vote in 2016, a year when an unusually high number of voters expressed dissatisfaction with both major-party candidates, and 4.1% of the vote in Idaho. Independent Evan McMullin came in third in Idaho in 2016 with 6.7% of the vote.

Appeal filed in transgender sports caseThe Alliance Defending Freedom filed a notice of appeal to the U.S. Ninth Court of Appeals last week, asking the court to overrule a lower court ruling blocking enforcement of an Idaho law barring transgender girls and women from female high school and college sports teams.

The Alliance, a socially conservative Arizona-based group, helped to craft House Bill 500, has backed similar bills in other states and is representing two Idaho State University students who support Idaho’s law and are defending it alongside the state against a legal challenge from the American Civil Liberties Union of Idaho and the progressive feminist group Legal Voice. Chief U.S. District Judge David Nye barred its enforcement in an August ruling as the case works its way through the courts, writing in his order that the plaintiffs are “likely to succeed in establishing the act is unconstitutional as currently written.”

This weekPaulette Jordan, the Democratic U.S. Senate nominee running against incumbent Republican Jim Risch, is holding a series of campaign events in the Treasure Valley early this week, including a Zoom town hall in Ada County today, a press conference in Caldwell and opening a Boise campaign office on Monday, and a voter registration event in Garden City on Tuesday, according to her campaign.

Reporter Nathan Brown can be reached at 208-542-6757. Follow him on Twitter: @NateBrownNews.